All cases

Filtered by: Theft

Desecration at Basilica in Charente-Maritime

March 16, 2019, France

The Basilica of Saint-Eutrope de Saintes in the Charente-Maritime department of southwestern France was desecrated on March 16th when consecrated hosts were stolen by unknown thieves. The diocese announced that a reparation Mass would be held.

Desecration Theft

Dublin Church Crypt Desecrated

February 25, 2019, Ireland

Vandals stole the head from an 800-year-old mummified body, known as “The Crusader” from the crypt of St. Michan's Church in Dublin. The crypt was badly damaged and several of the mummies, including the 400 year old remains of a nun, were desecrated in the incident.

Desecration Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Thefts from Four Churches in Baden-Württemberg Region in Three Days

February 8, 2019, Germany

Between February 6th and 8th, four churches in the Baden-Württemberg region were victims of theft from offertory boxes: two churches in Rheinhausen, a church in Sasbach, and a church in Wyhl. Police are investigating.

Theft

Theft from Talmont Church

February 3, 2019, France

The tabernacle was broken and the ciborium containing consecrated hosts was stolen from the church of Saint-Pierre de Talmont (Vendée) on February 3rd.

Desecration Theft

Consecrated Hosts Thrown inside Tabernacle; Ciborium Stolen

February 3, 2019, France

Before Sunday Mass on February 3rd, it was discovered that someone had broken into the tabernacle in the chapel of Sainte-Anne in Notre-Dame-et-Saint Junien Church in Lusignan, scattered the hosts, and stolen the ciborium where the hosts were stored. The police were called and began an investigation.

Desecration Theft

Burglaries in Two Churches in Freren Cause Property Damage of 9,000 Euros

December 28, 2018, Germany

Unknown perpetrators broke into a Catholic church and an Evangelical church in Freren, stealing small amounts of money from donation boxes, but causing about 9,000 euros in damage.

Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Monks Brutally Attacked during Robbery

December 27, 2018, Austria

Six monks were attacked, gagged, and bound during the course of a robbery at the monastery of Maria Immaculata in Vienna on December 27th. Several of the victims were seriously injured and police began a large-scale investigation.

Hate Crime Theft

Fire and Vandalism in Trier Abbey and Church

December 18, 2018, Germany

Intruders entered the Benedictine abbey of St. Matthias through a window during the night of December 18th and ransacked several rooms and the adjacent church, breaking sacred objects, overturning furniture, and setting fire to songbooks and other papers. Police estimated the damage to be in the thousands of euros.

Hate Crime Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Theft and Desecration of Madrid Church

November 13, 2018, Spain

On the 13th of November intruders broke into the church of Nuestra Señora de Madrid, desecrated the tabernacle, stole a ciborium, a small monstrance, and other objects from the parish office. The Cardinal Archbishop of Madrid, Carlos Osoro, expressed his pain, his prayers, and his condemnation for this desecration to the whole parish community and will soon hold an act of reparation in the church. The police began an investigation.

Desecration Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Parish Church Vandalized

November 2, 2018, Germany

Police reported that two teenagers are suspected of having caused at least €3,000 in damage to the Reichertshausen parish church St. Stephanus between August 31st and September 13th. Many statues were damaged: the wing of a dove (representing the holy spirit) was broken, the statue of John the Baptist was damaged, and the head of a statue on the altar was broken off. A foul smelling and foamy liquid was poured into the holy water. The sacristan who discovered all of this damage also found remainders of ashes and crumbs, spilled beverages, a burned prayer book, and the note “F… dich Gott” (“F… you God”) in a book for prayer requests. 

Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Desecration of Church in French Guiana

November 2, 2018, France

One or more unknown individuals broke into the church du Bon Pasteur and ransacked everything. The table of the altar was broken, furniture was knocked over, video material disappeared, the locks to the sacristy were broken, and consecrated hosts were emptied from the tabernacle. The parish priest and the church community were shocked and dismayed. An investigation was opened.

Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Statues of Saints and the Virgin Mary Smashed, Decapitated, and Stolen in Ticino

October 10, 2018, Switzerland

Since Easter, there have been eight attacks against statues of female saints and the Virgin Mary in the southern canton of Ticino.

Intolerance towards Religious Symbols Religious Symbols Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Diocese of Osma-Soria Reported Two Churches Damaged and Robbed in 15 Days

October 2, 2018, Spain

The Diocese of Osma-Soria reported on October 2nd that the church of San Esteban in the town of Masegoso was vandalized, but nothing was stolen. In Soria on September 22nd, thieves entered the hermitage of the Virgin of Ulagares and stole the money donated by the faithful, as well as cult objects of low value and some construction tools. The civil guard began and investigation.

Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Elderly Priest Injured by Two Young Men

October 1, 2018, France

On September 26, 2018 an 81-year-old priest was assaulted by two homeless men he sheltered in his home. The priest was awakened by noise at around 2:00 in the morning and discovered the men trying to steal his television. The men, who the priest had been sheltering and feeding for a few days, attacked him, threatened him with a kitchen knife, and tied him to his bed. After he shouted, the perpetrators fled but were soon identified and captured by the police. On October 1st, they were each sentenced to 18 months imprisonment.

Hate Crime Theft

Assault on Priest and Attempted Robbery at Bulgarian Monastery

September 18, 2018, Bulgaria

Six masked men entered the medieval Rozhen Monastery at about 8:00 pm on September 18th. They assaulted and tied up the priest who was present and began digging into the wall behind the iconostasis in the monastery church with picks and spades. After about 30 minutes, they left the monastery without taking anything except the priest's mobile phone. The priest was reportedly unharmed but shaken by the incident. Security camera footage led to the arrest of some of the perpetrators.

Hate Crime Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Chester Cathedral Damaged by Intruder

September 6, 2018, United Kingdom

A man was arrested after four stained-glass windows were smashed and other property was damaged at Chester Cathedral. The incident occurred just after midnight on September 4th and money was stolen from the premises. The damage caused to the cathedral is likely to exceed £10,000. The Cathedral's acting dean said the damage to the four stained-glass windows which date back to 1920 was very upsetting, in particular, the damage caused to a window depicting St. Werburgh, the Patron Saint of Chester.

Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Repeated Vandalism in Ansbach Churches

August 31, 2018, Germany

On the 31st of August, police reported that between August 17th and 30th, 2018 there were several incidents of vandalism in the Kirche St. Ludwig. Confessionals and offering boxes were damaged in the amount of 700 Euros. A church in Eyb was also vandalized between the 20th and the 30th of August. A window was smashed and several meters of copper sheets (window panels, gutters), valued at about 2000 euros, were stolen. The material damage was about 300 euros. The police began an investigation.

Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Robbery at Church of Mondéjar

August 20, 2018, Spain

In the early hours of the 20th of August there was a robbery at the church Santa María Magdalena of Mondéjar. The parish priest discovered the theft when he went to the church the next morning to prepare for Mass. The thieves had entered the church through a side door after breaking the lock. They broke three other door locks until they were able to enter the sacristy. They left the sacristy looted and stole more than 400 euros as well as three large sacred artworks of bronze. The artifacts date back to the late eighteenth or early nineteenth century. The civil guard was notified and investigated.

Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Bishop of Liège Threatened and Robbed at Home

August 15, 2018, Belgium

During the night between the 14th to the 15th of August, thieves broke into the bishop's home through a toilet window on the ground floor. They assaulted both Bishop Jean-Pierre Delville as well as his godson who was also present in the house. They demanded cash, believing that the money collected from the churches was kept there. Having no cash in the house, the bishop and his godson had to resort to the money the godson had kept saved up for a trip abroad. They further asked for gold and valuable paintings, a Picasso in particular. The bishop gave them three chalices and pointed them towards four pieces of art from the 17th century that decorated the council chamber. After hitting one of the victims and threatening to kill them, they locked the bishop and his godson in a bathroom, where they were found the next morning. The thieves were described as "masked and professional" and explained they needed money to cure the 5-year-old daughter of one of them. They spoke German, as well as an unidentified foreign language and only spoke French poorly. The damage has been estimated to amount to 20 000 euros. An investigation is ongoing.

Hate Crime Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Sacristy Broken into and Robbed in Carville

August 9, 2018, France

The sacristy of the church of Carville (Calvados) was robbed and various objects were stolen including candle sticks. The wooden door to the sacristy was broken. A complaint was filed with the police. 

Theft